Eri has also been dedicated to the art of solo piano, moving audiences with her renditions of her own compositions and her spontaneous improvisations. Her most recent release, “Live in Benicàssim,” captures her 2017 solo piano concert in that picturesque Spanish town. It is her first solo piano album, and her eleventhrecording under her own name.
Eri was born in Osaka, Japan, and began playing classical piano at age three. She started composing when only eight years old, and studied voice, viola, and composition through her high school and college years. In 1995, she visited New York for the first time, and by chance heard Tommy Flanagan performing. She was so inspired by her first experience of a jazz piano trio that she decided on the spot to move to New York and dedicate herself to learning jazz. Later that year, Eri entered the New School University's prestigious jazz program, where she studied with Reggie Workman, Junior Mance, and LeeAnn Ledgerwood. In 1997, while still in school, she started playing regularly at the Avenue B Social Club, a popular spot among jazz musicians in the East Village. There she developed a musical friendship with fellow pianist Matthew Shipp.
Since 1998, Eri's trio has been appearing regularly at Arthur's Tavern, a historic jazz club in New York's Greenwich Village.
Eri has also been collaborating with such creative and celebrated musicians as William Parker, Daniel Carter, Hamid Drake, Federico Ughi, Yves Leveille and Paul McCandless. Eri has appeared on several William Parker recordings, and has performed in the U.S., Canada, Europe, Tunisia, and South Africa with his trio and sextet.